Children’s Obesity Fund Warns of Health Risks from Sugary Soft Drinks

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The Omidi brothers, through their non-profit The Children’s Obesity Fund, are concerned about the health dangers associated with drinking sugary soda. Recent studies link soft drinks to the two most preventable health conditions: diabetes and heart disease.

The severe health risk associated with the consumption of sugary sodas was a recent topic of discussion at an American Health Association conference, as reported by the Huffington Post. Soft drinks laden with sugar contribute to serious health conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease and obesity according to a recent study from the Global Burden of Diseases and may be linked to approximately 180,000 deaths worldwide every year.

The co-founders of the Children’s Obesity Fund, Michael Omidi M.D. and his brother Julian Omidi would like to bring greater public awareness to this global health issue, and encourage children in particular to severely limit their consumption of soft drinks.

“The number of illnesses and fatalities linked to sodas is considerably greater than what we previously imagined, and the fact that these drinks are marketed to young people makes these statistics doubly scary,” says Dr. Michael Omidi. “If we are going to address the growing epidemic of childhood obesity in this country and abroad in a meaningful way, we have to deal with the amount of sodas kids drink on a daily basis.”

Recently, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg attempted to pass a bill forbidding the sale of soft drinks in containers larger than 16 ounces but the legality of the bill was challenged by the State Supreme Court. The move ignited a firestorm of controversy with detractors stating that the ban infringed upon the rights of New York residents. Also, the ban doesn’t restrict the sale of super-sized beverages in large chain convenience stores such as 7-Eleven, nor is the sale of smoothies, coffee or milk-based drinks affected.

The study by the Global Burden of Diseases found that as many as 25,000 yearly deaths in the United States can be linked to the over-consumption of sugary sodas. “The fact that 25,000 fatal illnesses could have been prevented by merely limiting soda intake is something that should galvanize some action, although it isn’t certain yet if that action should be some kind of legislation,” says Dr. Omidi. “What is certain, however, is that it is critically important to increase our awareness of the major health issues that can result in drinking sodas several times a day, every day.”

Co-founded by Julian Omidi and Michael Omidi, M.D., the Children’s Obesity Fund (http://www.childrensobesityfund.org) hopes to help reverse the trend of rising obesity rates in America. The goal of the non-profit charity is to help people fully understand the obesity issue and its dire impacts on individuals and society as a whole -- and to use that knowledge to encourage children to grow up strong and healthy. Children’s Obesity Fund partners with other organizations to educate and support parents, educators and others so that we can all work together to raise healthy, active, social, and happy children. While the organization does not accept donations, it does encourage direct contributions of money and talents to the associations featured on our website. Children’s Obesity Fund is on Facebook as well as Google+, Twitter and Pinterest.

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